NOTE: As of January 2022, foreign buyers are now needed to send funds to a Turkish bank prior to purchase, so that the transaction can be processed in Turkish lira. For information, click here.
If you are wondering how to get a Turkish passport by buying property, look no further. Turkey offers an investment program under Turkish citizenship law that brings you the passport, visa-free travel, and many other benefits at the same time. As an investment real estate agent with offices all over Turkey, we can guide you in the right direction when buying a house, making the application, and knowing what the passport gets you in return. This article covers the Turkish Citizenship by investment guide, so all future citizens are fully knowledgeable in all aspects.
Get a Turkish Passport by Buying Property
Who Are Suitable Applicants?
The good news is that this scheme isn't one that only suits rich celebrities and business people, like many other countries. Before 2018, Turkey's minimum entry level for wannabe citizens was 1 million USD. However, after consultation, the Turkish government realised this was cutting out many of the world's population and hampering their Foreign Direct Capital Investment. So, they dropped the entry-level to $400,000, and this, in turn, made it one of the best capital investment schemes in the world. Out of all the nationalities in the world, only citizens from Syria, Armenia, North Korea, Nigeria, and Cuba cannot buy. So, any applicant with the right amount of funds and a clean criminal record is welcome to apply.
Is the Investment Scheme Genuine?
We are often asked if it is real, and we can confirm it is. We have assisted investment clients in the past with the application, but we can also look at countrywide records to see how many people have completed the process and are now Turkish citizens. Many countries offer a real estate investment program. Sometimes called privilege visas or golden passports, Turkey's investment scheme appeals not only for the minimum entry-level and visa-free travel but also for smooth, quick, and easy application and approval time.
A Turkish newspaper report from 2020 said that 7300 foreigners from 93 different countries gained Turkish Citizenship this way in the last three years. So, now you know the investment program in Turkey does work, let us look at what to know, the citizenship criteria, and the application process. In addition, to receiving the Turkish passport and visa-free travel, you also get many other benefits, so we also look at them.
1: Get a Turkish Tax Number
Remember, we guide you through the investment process every step, but the first step is to gain a Turkish tax number. We do this at the local tax office in the province you plan to buy by submitting passport photographs and original passport. The process is quick, and you receive the tax number instantly. Please keep a record of it, because there will be many future events to use it.
2: Open a Bank Account
Once we receive that, we then head to a Turkish bank of your choosing to assist with opening a Turkish bank account. This is important because all transactions must leave a paper trail and be made to a registered Turkish bank account. All we need is the tax number and a utility bill showing your current address. We will submit these with the application forms, and within 30 minutes, you will walk out of the bank with your account. Choose from many Turkish and international banks like HSBC, Akbank and Garanti.
3: Where to Buy
You may already know which area of Turkey to buy in, but if not, we advise on the popular Turkish provinces and towns. At this point, consider how you will use the property investment since you will keep it for at least three years. If you want a wise real estate investment with mid to long term capital appreciation, Istanbul city is a good destination. Mass developments happening in outskirt districts of the European side offer lucrative opportunities for capital appreciation.
However, for summer getaways by the beach, the Antalya region in Mediterranean Turkey would fare better. It is the most popular beach holiday destination in Turkey and home to large expat communities enjoying a relaxed, laidback lifestyle with fantastic sea views. To make some passive income on your investment by renting out your home, famous tourist districts include Antalya, Fethiye, and Bodrum.
4: Choose Real Estate Worth $400,000
Not all homes are eligible for Citizenship by investment, so e mail or call us today to receive a portfolio via email. Alternatively, browse our portfolio of apartments and villas in Turkey for sale. The search button allows buyers to source between the price ranges, districts, types, and home features. Each listing contains everything to know, including price, location, home features and contact details to find out more via e mail or arrange a viewing.
5: Buy the Property for the Investment Programme
Remember for the Citizenship by investment programme, the property in Turkey must be worth at least $400,000, either completed or close to completion, have a habitation certificate, be title deed ready and suitable for valuation reports. It can be either an apartment or a villa. When you find the Turkish home you want to buy, the first step is to get a notarised sales contract and employ a lawyer. If you don't already have one, we can present a list of worthy lawyers for you to choose from. We walk you through the rest of the process until you get your title deeds. When signing for the title deeds, state the reason for buying is the Citizenship by investment program, and you pledge to keep the property for at least three years. Remember, make all investment transactions via your Turkish bank account. To transfer overseas funds, use a foreign exchange company to get the best exchange rate and low fees.
6: Certificate of Conformity and Turkish Residency
Once done, we will get the official valuation report to prove how much the property is worth. We also submit the bank receipts to the Ministry of Environment and Urbanisation in Turkey. Before applying for the Citizenship by investment programme, applicants need residency visas. We guide you through this quick and easy process. All that is required is proof you can officially support yourself financially and have healthcare coverage. After the online application, you receive an appointment at the district where you buy the property. Once approved, the authorities send residency cards through the post. The first application is approved for a year, which is enough time to apply for your Turkish Citizenship by investment.
7: Apply for Turkish Citizenship
So, we arrive at the last stage, which is applying for the Turkish Citizenship by investment program. An applicant needs…
- Birth certificate
- Proof of Turkish residency
- All documents that show the spouse and dependent like marriage and birth. In the case of widows, also include the death certificate
- Health insurance
- 12 biometric passport photographs
- Translated and notarised copies of all foreign documents
- Power of Attorney. This can be given to your lawyer
- Application forms.
The Citizenship by investment application is passed to numerous departments for backgrounds checks before arriving at the president's office in Turkey for official approval. Please note, the applicant must not have a criminal record. The application process usually takes around six months to complete. Once received, congratulations because you, your spouse and your children receive a Turkish passport and become official Turkish citizens. Welcome to Turkey! (Read a quick summary of the Turkish citizenship investment program application.)
Benefits of Turkish Citizenship
1: Visa-Free Travel
While some nationalities like the Brits and Europeans enjoy the freedom of travel when it comes to passport, many other nationalities do not. For this reason, Citizenship by investment in Turkey proves appealing because it guarantees visa-free travel to over 100 countries around the globe. Also, consider that Turkey is in a prime location globally, and the world of travel has just opened for all investors.
2: One Time Application
Although the residence permit process in Turkey is quick and easy and most people are approved, it still does not give long term peace of mind. It involves often reapplying until the applicant becomes eligible for the long-term permit after eight years. Citizenship by investment pays off because the application lasts a lifetime, giving investors security for their future as a Turkish citizen and allowing them to plan a life in Turkey.
3: Can be Non-Resident
Many other citizenships by investment programs around the globe require the applicant to live in the country for a lengthy period before, during and after applying. Turkey does not. Investors can come and go as they please, so whether they want to live here or just come to Turkey for the summer, they have the freedom to do so.
4: Future Children
The Turkish Citizenship by investment program covers you, your children, and your spouse. Still, should you decide to have a family or add more children later, they will automatically become a Turkish citizen by birth right. So, a citizenship application also gives family members peace of mind.
5: Healthcare and Retirement
Did you know that Turkey is one of the most modernised countries globally when it comes to healthcare? Certain hospitals like those in Izmir in western Turkey are renowned for their professionalism and expertise. At the same time, procedures like hair transplants and dental work have put Turkey on the map for medical tourism. By becoming a Turkish citizen, you are tapping into an excellent healthcare system. When compared to places like Span, many people say their healthcare system doesn't take care of the elderly; it is easy to enjoy peace of mind in Turkey. Likewise, should they choose to, investors can pay into the retirement scheme to receive a Turkish pension in later years.
6: Work and Study as a Citizen
Although a residence permit gives you the right to live in Turkey, you must apply for another license if you want to work. Likewise, if you are going to study in Turkey, this is an entirely different permit and application process. By gaining Turkish Citizenship through property purchase, you have the right to live here and work and study. This means planning for your financial future and career has never been easier.
7: Gorgeous Weather and Turkish Food
Do not think investment in Turkey is all about money because the country offers much more. Three hundred days of sunshine a year makes living in Turkey an outdoor pastime. Think outdoor pursuits or lying on one of Turkey's many blue flag beaches lining the Aegean and Mediterranean. The weather also encourages alfresco style dining. Although many restaurants throughout Turkey serve up international cuisine, we recommend getting to known Turkish dishes that reflect society's insistence on fresh ingredient and healthy eating.
8: Things to Do
Did you know that Turkey is an adventure sports hub of the world? It also has thousands of historical sites, famous trekking routes like the Lycian way and naturally, given it is surrounded on four sides by the sea, sailing is a favourite pastime. The seven geographical regions also present various flora and fauna, and culture and arts in places like Istanbul city and Antalya earn international fame. It is impossible ever to be bored in Turkey. In fact, most citizens pursue their passion, whether this is creativity, physical health, or making friends.
9: Turkish society
There is an age-old Turkish saying that every stranger is a friend. Another one says that deep friendships are formed over a cup of coffee. Indeed, Turkish hospitality is known the world over for friendliness. Regardless of where applicants go in Turkey, it is easy to settle in and make friends. Try to learn the language so that you can make the most of your Citizenship, and in next to no time, Turkey will feel like a home from home.
Benefits of the Invest Program in Turkey
For applicants, gaining Turkish Citizenship is a huge benefit, but buying real estate in Turkey also pays off because the housing market is one extensive investment playground. Many applicants are surprised at the low prices per square metre of real estate. A comparison of real estate in Turkey versus places like Spain, Portugal, and France shows precisely how much the Turkish housing market offers. This is mainly due because Turkey was late to modernise its housing market. It wasn't until the turn of the century that Turkey introduced mortgages for Turkish citizens and embarked on projects to build new, modern housing.
In some places, there is also an abundance of housing which is keeping prices down short term. For this reason, applicants appreciate Turkish Citizenship and the opportunity for a wise financial investment and worthy property purchase to their real estate portfolio. Although the Turkish Citizenship by investment program states you only must keep the property for three years, we advise mid to long term to see a profitable return on your investment option. Aim to keep the property for at least 5 to 10 years.
Living in Turkey all Year Round
So, once you have received your Turkish Citizenship, you can either use the property as a holiday home, rent it out, or live in the country all year round. If you choose the latter, our article about living in Turkey will help you. It discusses everything to know, including the best places to live, testimonials with people who have already made a move, settling in, running your home, budgeting and much more.
More Useful Information to Invest in Turkey
Also, read our buyers guide, which is full of helpful information for investors buying property for Citizenship. As part of our customer service, we don't just leave you at the door once you have purchased your new home. We like to help people settle in. Our buyer's guide discusses the need to know like driving, bringing pets into Turkey, working and much more. As well as advising on an investment option, it serves as a helpful guide for legalities and getting started on your new life in Turkey.
Alternatively, our blog about Turkey reflects the many years of combined experience of our team. We took all our local knowledge and years of experience to write about destinations. We have offices in Istanbul, Fethiye, Antalya, Bodrum and other places, so we like to keep up to date with local developments and pass the news onto our clients. In the blog, we also discuss culture, society, traditions, food and living and owning a home here in Turkey. Don't forget as well; you can follow us on Facebook to receive notifications of news out of Turkey.
We are Property Turkey, a real estate investment specialist with offices all around the country. We have helped thousands of foreign and Turkish buyers get on the housing ladder by finding their dream home. We also help investors looking and the real estate sector to add to their portfolio. We hope we answered your question on how to get a Turkish passport by buying property and the investment program. If you have more questions about the Turkish Citizenship by real estate investment option or need help finding a property, call or email us today and speak with our experienced, local agents in Turkey. Alternatively, if you are in a destination where we have offices, please drop in and meet the team.
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